6 Teaching Tips from TeachMeet
TeachMeet at BETT
On Friday, January 26th, many educators, including Adobe Education Leaders Ross Wallis, Ian Usher (Host), and Lukas Engqvist, attended the 2018 Bett TeachMeet. TeachMeet is an informal but organized “unconference” to share best teaching practices, practical innovations, and personal insights in teaching with technology. TeachMeets are popping up all over the UK and Australia, and are quickly expanding to other parts of the globe!
Much like EdCamps in the US, TeachMeets are teacher-led events that do not follow the schedule of a traditional conference. However, unlike EdCamps, teachers submit their names and proposals ahead of time to be randomly chosen for 5-minute or quick 2-minute sessions from a randomizer found within ClassTools.
Many enthusiastic educators were present at TeachMeet Bett to share classroom practices, as well as helpful tech tools that any teacher could implement in his or her classroom.
Motion Math and Adobe Spark
Leeroy Parkinson, a primary teacher and blogger from Davyhulme, shared the use of Motion Math Pizza to gamify learning for math in the primary grades. He encouraged his students to use Adobe Spark to share learnings and pizza recipes on a Spark webpage. As his students enjoyed this project, Mr. Parkinson wanted to take the use of Adobe Spark a step further. He contacted local restaurants in Davyhulme to see if they could use his class’ support in creating web pages for their businesses. The Deli’s page is an outstanding example of what is possible with primary students and Adobe Spark!
Jar of Awesome
Simon Johnson, an educator from West Midlands, demonstrated the power behind a Jar of Awesome, in addition to a quick overview of 21 things every teacher should try. The idea is simple — take a jar or other small container in your classroom, and turn it into a repository for when amazing things happen in your classroom. Then, at the end of the year, or throughout the school year, revisit these incredible moments and celebrate them with students.
Any space can become an active learning environment, and teachers can alter their classrooms to create more opportunities for movement. “We need prehab, not rehab,” said Mr. Llewellyn, in regard to student physical health and rates of childhood obesity. The BBC Super Movers provides resources and strategies to incorporate movement into every lesson, regardless of subject.
Matt Moore, a primary computing teacher from Bradford, shared his strategies for creating a photography club at his school. In his club, students take ownership over demonstrating learning through running a blog for the club. Check out his suggested equipment and some student examples below:
Jodie Lopez, an Education Technology consultant from Nottingham, portrayed the power of music therapy with students in the classroom.
While her students listened to various musical pieces, Ms. Lopez encouraged them to draw their reactions and emotions. As she continued this exercise throughout the course of the year, students began to reveal their passions, fears, and thoughts in a safe space.
Drew Buddie, learning technologist from Hertfordshire and organizer of the TeachMeet, advised UK teachers to apply for sponsored travel through the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust. The program empowers teachers to travel internationally to analyze the qualities of innovative educational programs, and bring back learnings to their local schools and classrooms. Overall, an amazing opportunity for UK educators!
As important with any in-person professional development opportunity, value comes from learning transformed into classroom practice and continued relationships in a Professional Learning Network. To demonstrate these practices and continue the conversation, educators can connect on Twitter or participate in educational Twitter chats.